A Stafford County man was charged with attempted carjacking Wednesday following a bizarre incident that ended with the man being apprehended after trying to hide in a trash can, authorities said.

The incident took place at the Circle K convenience store at 34 Prosperity Lane about 9 p.m., Sheriff’s spokeswoman Amanda Vicinanzo said. Three young women were at the store when the suspect, who none of them knew, got into their vehicle, said something unintelligible and pulled a gun out of his waistband.

One of the victims mouthed the word “help” to a man coming out of the store, and the man approached the victim and confronted the suspect, Vicinanzo said. The man got out of the vehicle and walked away, while the victims called the Sheriff’s Office and moved to a different location in the parking lot.

When Deputy John Ahern arrived a short time later, the victims pointed to an ice cooler that the suspect had gotten into. As Ahern approached the cooler, the suspect opened the door and Ahern saw the gun in his hand.

After several commands, the suspect got out of the cooler and placed the gun on the ground. He then got into a trash can and placed the top over it.

By this time, another deputy had arrived and the officers repeatedly ordered the man out of the trash can. He finally complied and was taken into custody without further incident.

Romaine Williamson, 25, was also charged with using a firearm in the commission of a felony and three counts of brandishing a firearm. He was placed in the Rappahannock Regional Jail.

Keith Epps: 540/374-5404

kepps@freelancestar.com

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